Hong Kong's morning coffee just got a little more interesting...
Starbucks branches in Hong Kong are now accepting bitcoin payments and are offering 20 percent off discount for the purchase using the Fold app. This app is a U.S. startup that is affiliated with the Bitcoin Association of Hong Kong.
To avail of this, a customer has to receive his personal Starbucks code. This will initially show a balance of $0 until it is loaded with bitcoin through the app. It may indicate that the app is untested outside of the U.S. but it is already currently working in Hong Kong.
Bitcoin payments loading options include denominations of $5 or $10. To spend this and avail of the discount in Hong Kong’s Starbucks branches, simply tell the cashier that you will be paying via gift card.
The barcode scanner will then be used on the Fold app indicating your current balance then you will get a receipt containing your remaining balance.
This is positive news since Starbucks is a relatively big name which can draw attention to Bitcoin as people who have never heard of the currency might become interested in what Bitcoin actually is and how it might be used.
Also, opening up business to Bitcoin in Hong Kong might be a kind of pilot for integrating such payments in other markets. If it turns out that there is interest in Bitcoin, Starbucks might decide to extend this sort of service beyond Hong Kong.
This is not revolutionary in the sense that it doesn’t really create any new features for the Bitcoin system but make no mistake, recognition is very important for Bitcoin. It is definitely one of the areas that need improvement but moves by international companies to use Bitcoin might help in bringing Bitcoin to a larger audience.
For now, let’s focus on the charts.
On BitStamp, yesterday was a day of not that much action. Bitcoin fluctuated around $235 and the volume was lower than on Wednesday. Recall that yesterday we wrote:
(...) We haven’t really seen a decisive move either but the volume level is still similar to what we saw yesterday (the day is not over, though). All of this suggests that Bitcoin might be running out of steam as far as the move up is concerned. In any case, the short-term outlook remains unchanged unless we see a more visible move above $240 (and our stop-loss levels at $239 are guarding the already profitable hypothetical short positions against any such move).